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Park Rapids students have opportunity to plan for careers after high school

Park Rapids Area High School students have been planning for their future.

High School Principal Al Judson reported on some educational opportunities students have been participating in at Monday night's school board meeting.

"One of the things that helps make things relevant to students is if they see what it's supposed to look like at the end," he said.

As students reach 10th or 11th grade, knowing what it is that they want to do after they graduate from high school is important, he added.

One of the recent activities students participated in was a day trip for juniors to Minnesota State Community and Technical College in Detroit Lakes.

Eighty-six students and four chaperones spent a day learning about two-year technical college programs and four-year programs.

Also, 10th-graders are working on the PLAN program. PLAN includes testing in English, math, reading and science and a career interest inventory. It prepares students for taking the ACTs.

In other business, the board:

-Heard superintendent Glenn Chiodo report that enrollment numbers have increased over last year in Park Rapids.

"We are pleased to see where they're at," he said. "We certainly hope that they stay there but we know that they fluctuate. I'm glad that they're fluctuating up."

Chiodo said the numbers seem solid and he hopes they will stay.

-Heard Chiodo report that after a few weeks of a high number of absences due to the flu, the numbers are back to normal.

-Learned that Century principal Bruce Gravalin said he and assistant principal Jeff Johnson have been working on a rough draft of an AYP improvement plan to submit to the state.

"We will be completing that plan on Wednesday the 18th," he said.

Once it is accepted by the state, he will provide a copy to the school board and go over the plan.

The curriculum and instruction committee will be meeting later this week to discuss new math curriculum. A group of teachers has also been looking at reading curriculum.

-Approved the hiring of Loma Vessey, cooks helper, effective Nov. 2.

-Approved the second reading/adoption of the Lift and Transfer policy #517.

-Approved the hiring of Joe Grimes as middle school girls basketball coach.

-Approved the resignation of Ruby Sharp, a paraprofessional at Century Elementary, effective Nov. 30. The position will be filled for the remainder of the year and be examined at the end of the year.

-Heard from business manager Carol Hutchinson that the insurance claim for the fourth-grade pod flooding last spring is nearly complete and the district will receive a check soon.

-Hutchinson reported that Free and Reduced Lunch numbers are higher this year, with an additional 50 free lunch students and an additional 15 reduced lunch students. The increase will mean an increase in funding for the 2010-11 school year.

-Heard Community Education director Jill Dickinson announce that musician Todd Green will be putting on a program for Park Rapids students Thursday and have a public performance Friday night. She also reported that a new program for students who arrive at school early, called Play 30, is going well, with about 22 students attending.